Easiest Coconut Milk Recipe – Improved

Coconut Milk Revised Edited Wmk.jpg.

I’m all about DIY versions of kitchen staples like almond milk, homemade rice milk, powdered sugar substitute and dairy-free condensed milk.

Basically, if I can make it myself, I pretty likely will do it :).  Anyhow, it’s been awhile since I first posted my Homemade Coconut Milk Recipe.

It is, for sure, the easiest way to make coconut milk that you can find, but it did leave a little something to be desired.

Well, thanks to one of my super duper ingenius readers, I have a fabulous update for you!

Read on for the details :-).  You’ll be glad that you did.

We love coconut milk around here.

For me, my original Coconut Milk Recipe was just fine.

I mean, what can be easier than blending some dried unsweetened coconut with some plain water?

No need really to strain through a nut milk bag or strainer.

And really, this super busy mom really can’t deal with buying a whole coconut, splitting it open, and then blending and straining the contents.  Maybe once in awhile for a fun homeschool project, but not on a regular basis.

But if you read the comments on my original coconut milk recipe post, you will see that some readers weren’t thrilled with the final product being a little grainy.

For me, if I blend the mixture on high in my Vitamix for 3 minutes (of course, any high speed blender will do), I really found that the graininess wasn’t a big deal, but there was quite a bit of residue in the bottom of my jar in the fridge.

Since I’m so cheap frugal, I would just stir it up before serving and call it good.

And then I would just add more filtered water to the stuff at the bottom of the jar and use it in a recipe or make a smoothie out of it.

Sure, it’s not as “amazingly thick and creamy” as the expensive stuff in the stores, but then, when you are saving something like 90% off the price, I can deal with a little graininess, you know?

Well, one of my readers shared something this past month that made the “Easiest Coconut Milk Recipe” just a tad less easy but a whole lot better.

So I am sharing that with you today.

The result?

A much creamier coconut milk for you and yours.

One reader even shared with me that she was having troubles with her coconut milk separating out a bit in her morning coffee, but since she started using this method, it wasn’t doing that anymore and she was really thrilled.

If you really want to make this smoother, you can strain it through a nut bag or cheesecloth. I don’t bother doing that.  When it gets thick I just add some more filtered water and stir it up. We’re pretty use to “not perfect” coconut milk now :).

How to Use Coconut Milk

- In recipes as a dairy free alternative, if you are dairy allergic, vegan, or just plain out of milk
– In a smoothie
Plain – my son LOVES coconut milk with some stevia extract or my Liquid Vanilla Stevia
– Make frozen coconut milk ice cubes and add them to your favorite drinks so they aren’t diluted by regular ice cubes.  This is great in coffee or tea.
Over hot or cold cereal (we love it over my Baked Oatmeal / Oatmeal Cake)

More Super Fast Whole Food Pantry Staples:

Powdered Egg Replacer (compare to Ener-G)
Powdered Sugar Substitute
Easiest Almond Milk Ever
Homemade Rice Milk
Homemade Nut or Seed Butter
Homemade Coconut Butter
Homemade Taco Seasoning
Best Cinnamon Sugar

How do you use Coconut Milk?

Shared at Diet, Dessert, and Dogs.

Comments

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  1. What about the fat in this coconut milk ? Not like in a can, and the 10g are really important!

    What do you think ?

  2. I was on my way to make more coconut milk when I saw this post. I like the original recipe just fine.

    I use this coconut milk to make your oatmeal cake. The first time I made it with coconut milk and added cranberries. The second time coconut milk and chocolate chips… oh, my!! both time, it didn’t last more than 24 hours. Oh, by the way, I use a 9x 11″ dish pan, not an 8×8…and the cake is thick!! I do soak the oats for more than 24 hs… your cake is the best ever!!! thanks for the recipe.

    I have passed it on to a couple of friends. :)

  3. I’ve been using the method on the tropical traditions site and hate straining the hot liquid through the cheesecloth. Very excited to try this! One question though, what do you do about the fat separating and hardening on the top of when storing it in the fridge? I don’t know how to get it reincorporated before we drink it. Thanks in advance!

    • Not that much gathers typically. I am not sure why. Typically I just have solids on the bottom – let me know how it works for you!

    • I use the solid fat/butter that forms on top, after refrigeration, to make a brown sugar coconut scrub. My daughter and I love to use it occasionally while showering. It leaves no oily residue and your skin feels so soft afterwards.

  4. Hi! I just found your website and I love it! I have a few questions.

    Where do you recommend you purchase the dried unsweetened shredded coconut?

    How long does this coconut milk stay fresh in the fridge?

    Thanks!
    Jen

    • I buy from Country Life Natural Foods in the Midwest. If you can’t buy from there, have you looked at Green Polka Dot Box? I have a few posts about them and they have a great deal on membership right now and good prices on coconut products. Check them out and let me know what you think. I can probably do another membership giveaway if that appeals to you.

      We drink ours so quickly but I would think if it’s not in the door you could get about 4-6 days out of it. Ours never lasts that long :).

      • Thank you so much for responding! Green PolkaDot looks really neat! I am in Utah. I actually called around some local natural food stores and I was able to find some organic shredded coconut for a great price and I’m going to pick it up soon. I can’t wait to try it! I am on a hunt though for almond and coconut flour since we found out a few days ago my husband has celiac’s disease. When I get some time tonight I will research Green PolkaDot some more to see if it would be a benefit to my family. Thanks again for all your help!

    • Hi Jen,
      I buy my Raw Organic Coconut Shreds from wildernessfamilynaturals.com. The shreds are dehydrated at a lower temp and are not processed with sulfites. (I’m not affiliated with them in any way, I just love their high quality products and their prices are pretty darn good too) :)

  5. I’ve actually started making mine from creamed coconut, but I will remember this when I don’t have any on hand (like right now:).

  6. I made the coconut milk, (first time) and the coconut floats on the top. It tastes better than store bought, but wondering if I should have used hot water to dissolve the coconut?
    By the way, I love your posts and recipes!

  7. Yes I am still happy with my new milk in my coffee! Much improved if you ask me. I also have the coconut floating to the top and water on the bottom. In this new method it is much easier to remix with just a shake. The old way gave me too much solid floating mass that I had to break up but always left chunks. It was ok except if you wanted to drink it straight.
    I use a vitamix for mine. I do not think hot water is necessary but might help get some of the oils out. I use Lets Do Organic brand shredded coconut. I had bad luck with my local health food store shredded coconut and it contained sulfites, yuck. Keep up the good work Adrienne, love your blog.

    • You’re too kind. So glad it’s working better for you. I’m swamped here for about a week then hopefully some more fun basic stuff coming next week – and maybe my essential oils post follow up :).

  8. I make my homemade coconut milk a tad differently. I add a whole vanilla bean to 4 c. hot water, 1 c. coconut and let it steep for about 20 minutes. Once the mixture has slightly cooled, I then add it to my blender & blend on high for about a minute. (Please be careful when using hot water as the pressure from the steam may pop the blender lid right off!) I also just use a metal strainer (not cheesecloth) to strain the blended mixture. The cheesecloth could be the reason that you don’t have much of the coconut oil/fat left in the finished product. I use the metal strainer because I want all of the fat to be in my finished product (it will float to the top and harden just a bit when placed into the refrigerator). I scoop out the hardened coconut oil (fat) and store it in a separate jar in the refrigerator and use it in my smoothies :) To sweeten my milk I blend in a little bit of honey. It’s sooo delish & way better for you than what you find in the stores. (no chemicals added!) I purchase Raw Organic Coconut shreds (dehydrated, no sulfites used!) from wildernessfamilynaturals.com (I believe they are in MN) they seem to have the best prices that I’ve found and you can buy in bulk which in the long run saves some $.
    Happy Blending!

    • Nice tip. Have you checked Green Polka Dot Box’s prices on Wilderness’ coconut shreds? I haven’t compared yet. Here is my post on GPDB:

    • Question – since you scoop out the separated fat, you are drinking the milk without any fat? I want to use this for my daughter so I want to make sure she is getting all those good fats!

  9. Hi Adrienne,
    do you need to strain the milk after you take it out of the blender?

  10. I would never have thought to make my own coconut milk! Great idea.

  11. I’ll have to try this. I don’t know if its just California but natural foods are expensive here! I’ll have to compare Whole Foods to the online sources I saw in the comments…..I love to use coconut cream to make into whipped cream :-D

  12. Can the immediately unused portion of this be frozen for later ?

  13. Son of a gun ; it actually worked ! Just made my first batch which came out to a full 48 oz. of pure coconut milk ( very few residual particles using cheesecloth ) for roughly $2 bucks and change. Put 16 oz. in the fridge & the remainder in the freezer. All with 8 oz. milk in 16oz. freezer bags since I use 8 oz. per smoothie & to allow for any expansion. Used two different types of dessicated coconut – one very fine & the other medium coarseness. 1:1 ratio water to coconut with the more coarse while the fine required 1.5 water : 1 coconut. Each in a regular old blender, that only takes 5 cups anyway, on high for three minutes. No fuss, no mess & smelled GREAT. Taste test in the morning but so far so good. Thank you for posting this information Adrienne !

  14. Holy cow ; it wasn’t even close ! Home made was smooth, creamy and surpassed anything I expected in the taste department. Actually tasted like coconut as opposed to what we now know is sludge in the can we usually buy. The ingredients I put into my smoothies ( pomegranate juice, greek yogurt, coconut milk & banana ) ran up a hefty grocery bill all by themselves. This put a significant dent in that cost. Next up – experimenting with home made greek yogurt. Thanks again !

  15. Hi there! I stumbled across your link when I was searching for how long coconut milk would last after making it. I’m actually looking to make it not to drink but it mix into a homemade shampoo, I’ve been on the hunt for homemade shampoo recipes that work since being diagnose with a severe fragrance allergy that inhibits me from using what feels like 90% of store bought ones anymore that don’t cost a fortune!! The site that I found the shampoo recipe on http://healthimpactnews.com/2012/homemade-coconut-milk-shampoo-and-body-wash/ said that it would last 2-4 weeks in the shower. Would anyone have any sort of information on this… I was wondering if the coconut milk in it would stay longer because of the other ingredients mixed with it? Thanks for the help! Your blog is fantastic, glad I found it

  16. Sherry Fredley says:

    I will have to give this a try. So it seems that you are first making coconut butter. I have always strained mine and it is a bit of a pain but coconut milk is so addictive.

    • Not completely – just grinding it to about a powder. But coconut butter would work better. I can’t get c butter w/o using a lot more than 1 cup of coconut.

  17. Anne-Marie says:

    I made this and did not strain it but now the ice cream I made is gritty so either I did not whiz it enough at some stage or another or I am being fussy! I am remelting it and will strain and refreeze and see what happens!

  18. I use quite a bit of coconut milk for smoothies and cooking, and am excited to try this! I’m a little confused on my coconut products — is the coconut milk that comes in a can the same as the coconut milk I buy in a box? (brands SoDelicious, Silk, Etc.)

  19. Have you tried boiling the coconut or soaking it overnight to soften it? That should sort out some of your “grainy” texture and if you can be bothered pop it through a nut milk bag! Hope that helps!

    x

  20. I have been meaning to try my go at homemade milk for so long…and you finally just pushed me over! Delicious goodness…so much better! My family goes through so much darn coconut milk, it is a major cost…but @less that $1 for an organic quart, this will be a major savings.
    To answer the above reader: The canned varieties are full fat and much richer….most have a gum for thickening, and some use a preservative. The boxed varieties have been thinned significantly with water and most contain cane sugar and the all have gums, and vitamins/minerals added in.
    this coconut milk is more thin like the latter!
    Also, I tried the coconut butter route for an experiment with similar results…but I preferred both strained through my nut milk bag!

  21. Can I make coconut flour in my vita mix. I have tried it but maybe i didn’t mix it enough

    • Ground coconut is different than coconut flour. The directions to make coconut flour can be found on the internet. Maybe I can write a post on it sometime :).

  22. I absolutely love your website! I’m so glad I literally stumbled across your site while doing a few searches for vegan types of food items and recipes! I love how healthy you cook and how you share your great ideas about what to buy and what not to buy. The price breakdown on savings is also crucial because eating healthy can be really expensive when first starting out. If you’re a smart consumer and do your due diligent research before shopping – you end up saving more money. Your site is all encompassing which is great because I’m not jumping around from site to site having to remember what I was searching for. Your site is well organized and you link to your other recipes which I love! Thank you for taking the time to put this together and sharing it with the rest of us for free :)

  23. Does anyone give this coconut milk to thier toddlers/children? I’m just learning about the synthetic vitamins added to Silk and So Delicious brands and it makes me cringe thinking that I’ve been giving it to my child!! Trying to use healthier/organic alternatives seems to have backfired! I’m desperate to find ways to get enough fat, protein, calcium, vitamin D and other vitamins into a 25 month old!

    • I am sure they do – I give it to my kids. Of course, breastmilk is best as long as possible, in my opinion, but I never bought the packaged milks.

    • Karoline says:

      My 2-year-old and I made this together yesterday afternoon…and already need to make a new batch for this evening. He is still nursing at least 3 – 4 times a day, and otherwise drinks either water or one of our variety of homemade “milks” throughout the day — almond, cashew, walnut, coconut, or oat. (Tried sunflower milk; I love it, but that’s the only one he doesn’t like so far. ) Our pediatrician recommends avoiding daily intake of rice and soy milks/products and keeping others on rotation.

  24. This is fine but there is simply NOTHING like using coconut meat and coconut water and blending! May take a little longer but superior in taste and texture.

  25. Susan Alexander says:

    I plan to try this sometime soon… We have been buying those So Delicious products, but I am sure they are not as good for us. I’m just concerned about a lot of coconut flavor. I suppose there’s no getting around that. :/ I don’t want to do soy and my daughter is allergic to all nuts and dairy, so that doesn’t leave me with a lot of other options. :(

    • Can she have seeds? You could do sunflower and pumpkin seed milk. Or maybe will she drink it with a little carob in it?

      • Susan Alexander says:

        I don’t know about pumpkin, but sunflower is out too. :( Maybe I’ll try the pumpkin… Do the pumpkin seeds need to be shelled? Where could I find them?

        It’s not just about what she’ll drink, but I don’t know that I want everything I bake to taste like coconut. ;) It’s one of the reasons I went with expeller pressed coconut oil instead of the ubiquitous virgin…

        • Yes, they need to be shelled and you preferable should soak and dry them. I don’t at all feel that my baked goods taste like coconut using coconut milk, but if it bothers you you could also dilute it a bit. Hemp milk would work as well. As for where to buy them, it depends where you live. I buy mine from Country Life Natural Foods. If you don’t live in their delivery area, you could try Amazon. I haven’t tried this brand, but this is a reasonable price. (affiliate link)

    • Hi, this is at Susan. I am new to all this healthy , well natural (what we should have always been eating/drinking) foods. I have ALWAYS HATED anything coconut. I now have learned it wasn’t coconut I hated but the crap hey called coconut and anything it was in or on. I LOVE LOVE LOVE homemade coconut butter, love coconut oil and any recipes I have made with unsweetened real coconut or the whole coconut. I cant wait to try this milk! the hubby is getting me a Vitamix for our 20th anniversary this month!! YAY! Anyway I hope I might have helped a little :)

  26. CoconutLover says:

    I usually buy my coconut milk pre-made because I have five kids (four of which are boys) and I find that even the easiest coconut milk recipe is just too time consuming to even try. But I think this recipe definitely deserves a go, it just seems too simple not to try!

    If you are looking for some recipes to use your coconut milk in once you have it, try Yummy Coconut.com I have already tested the recipes out on my family so you don’t have to worry about making something nobody is going to eat!

  27. Melanie says:

    Love your recipe. I do, however, add one Medjool date and a dash of cinnamon to mine and its SO good:) Thanks for your recipe!

  28. I’m interested in trying this, but I don’t have a blender of coffee grinder.

    Can I use a food processor to ground the shredded coconut?

  29. i had similar grainy results with homemade coconut milk, and I too, have defaulted to a cheaper and content stance with this approach. However, upgrading the grainy to a smoother consistency sounds wonderful. challenge accepted.
    Thanks for sharing this!

  30. I tried a smaller-batch version of your original recipe, except I used 1/2c finely shredded unsweetened coconut + 2c water (same ratio). I didn’t pre-grind the coconut b/c I didn’t find this version till after. Actually, I was nervous that since I didn’t use the medium shred, the recipe would bomb. I strained it (my girls are texture-picky), and it tastes fine, but it’s very thin/watery. So, two questions:

    1. In this recipe, you’re suggesting a 1:5 ratio. Won’t that make it even more watery?
    2. What can I make with the strained coconut residue. There seems to be quite a bit.

    • Did you blend it for long enough? I wonder if it needed to be ground longer. You can dry the residue. Some folks use it for coconut flour. I have had it work most of the time.

  31. Hi ! I put my coconut threw my Omega juicer and it comes out beautiful with no pulp just pure juice and then I use the left over pulp that comes out the other side for flour !

  32. Wow, this could save me a LOT of money. I’ve been making coconut milk kefir with the Nature’s Forest coconut milk, but that gets EXPENSIVE very quickly. From the comments, it seems like this would have plenty of fat and be good for kefir, too, right?

  33. Will have to try this! How genius! :-)

  34. I don’t know how you drink it that way, it is like sand in your mouth. We only drink homemade coconut milk here, and I have a vitamix, and I can get it as fine as flour, but it still tastes gritty, and no one here will drink it like that. Is yours gritty? I haven’t tried in an coffee grinder, but I can’t imagine that it works better than a vitamix, since you can grind flour in that thing. Let me know, and if it is smooth, I will definitely try in the coffee grinder ;)

    • I don’t feel like it is gritty but I have considered adding some other things to it to make it more like store-bought. Give it a try and let me know what you think!

  35. Christine says:

    Tried this yesterday & wondering if I went too long. After 3 min I checked it and had what might be called coconut cream floating on top. I poured it into a jar & when I got it out of the fridge this morning the cream was at the top & rock solid. I tasted it & it is similar to coconut oil but creamier. I don’t have a Vitamix so I’m not sure what happened. My coconut is pretty fine, could that be a factor? Thank you for your site, it has been a blessing these last few months.

    • You will have to blend it longer w/o a Vitamix. I get that on the top too – we just blend it in to the milk or pour it into a hot drink. You can strain it out and dry it for coconut flour too.

  36. Thank you for the recipe! I’ve been wanting to make coconut milk and plan to try this today. Can you *please* share your recipe for coconut milk kefir?? :)

  37. Did I miss how long this might last in the fridge. I just recently went vegan before 6 and am using the So milk in my smoothies. There are additives for sure, and I’d like to avoid them. But I don’t use a ‘lot’ of coconut milk either. I see that freezing is an option, but just wondering how long it would keep in the fridge. Thanks! Great blog!!

    • I don’t know how long and I don’t want to get in trouble telling someone how long it will be OK – but I think using the same guidelines as for regular coconut milk would be fine. I always smell mine once it’s been a few days to make sure :).

  38. Treynolds says:

    I have made this recipe twice using my Vitamix and the next day there are curds floating around inside. Not sure how to avoid the curdling. Any advise would be much appreciated.

  39. Hi,

    I was wondering if you could tell me how fine the shredded coconut is that you use? On some sites you can buy from there are up to four different shreds! I’m thinking this would affect the ratio of coconut to water?

    We drink so much coconut milk in our smoothies. Up to now it’s been all been in cartons, and I just found out the possible dangers of the carrageenan in it (yuck!), so would love to start making my own (with a STRONG preference for not having to strain!) and came upon this recipe.
    Thanks so much!!!!!

  40. If you strain this and dry the pulp that is coconut flour (Much cheaper than store bought)

  41. A few questions: I just used this recipe, unfortunately with a regular blender, not a Vitamix. I tried blending it longer to accommodate. What I got was whipped coconut fat on top and sediment on the bottom. If I strain the sediment, I end up with a watery liquid. Is this the correct consistency? I guess I got too used to the creamy white store bought junk. Also, any way to re-incorporate the fat into the milk? Thanks!

  42. I just made this for the first time and it was SO easy! Also, I did strain the separated clumps as I poured it into the jars (just with a strainer – my kids are afraid of lumps). I used the clumps as a hand cream. I plan to store it in a small jar in the fridge.

  43. to stop the sepertion bring milk to room tempature then put in fridge then take out shake it repeat twice there ou go no sepertion good to go

  44. I add a 1/4 cup of chia seeds and let the seeds and coconut soak in hot water before blending. My coconut milk doesn’t seperate. I strain through a nut bag though, so that may help as well.

  45. Going to try this coconut milk recipe! My son is allergic to cows milk so he always drinks coconut milk and I hate buying the store kind because of all he additives! Do you have any idea if this recipe would work when trying to make a homemade coconut milk yogurt? I have used the canned coconut milk to try to make coconut milk yogurt but I always end up with a jar of separated yogurt, pure water at the bottom and cream at the top, when mixed, my 12 hours of incubating is ruined, its back to a pure liquid.

  46. This is what I do. I got the fairly big ‘chips’ of coconut (about fingernail size) from tropicaltraditions and then I just throw it in the magic bullet (hi-speed blender) for 30 seconds with some water and then do whatever else I want to do. Works great!

    As for the canned stuff, there is mostly a lot of crap I don’t want to put it in my body that relates to some of that texture. When I want something much thicker, I use real coconut — coconut cream concentrate also called coconut butter. When I get it, I heat the jar till it’s fairly liquid, pour it into silicone cupcake pan, and when cooled, I have a big ziplock full of coconut butter chunks. Just throw one in a pan and melt and add curry and shred chicken or whatever and it’s the best, purest ever.

    Prefer sweetened shreds? Throw a handful of the big chips into the ‘dry blade’ of a magic bullet-etc. just barely, shaking, and then pour into a little bit of water sweetened with whatever you like and let sit to absorb. Best homemade Mounds bar base ever.

    Those two base ingredients (coconut cream concentrate [butter] and coconut chips, if you have a handy high speed blender with both wet and dry blade, cover every possible need!

  47. thanks for the great recipe………….i read what all is in coconut milk that we get up here ( midland ontario canada) and going on the old saying…..if you can’t read and understand the ingredients do not use it…….and since there were such ingredients i have stayed away from using coconut milk………..now thanks to you i can quit putting in regular milk in recipes that call for coconut milk……yeah!!!!! thanks again adrienne

  48. This may have been asked already but how long will the homemade coconut milk last in the fridge?